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Nowadays, there are many people all over the world studying English
because English is used as the official language in 44 countries as well as the
language of business, commerce, politics, science, etc.However , like many
other languages, when using English in communication, especially when we
speak to native people, we often heard some strange words that we can never
heard and we can‟t look up their meaning in ordinary dictionaries. They are
slang words that make almost people studying English feel difficult to
understand in conversations. Hence,to help English leaners understand what the
native people say more clearly, I choose the research on slang with the subjiect
about rhyming slang, which is the most widely used in slang system.

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1
THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING
HAI PHONG PRIVATE UNIVERSITY
DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN LANGUAGES
GRADUATION PAPER
..oOo.
A STUDY ON : RHYMING SLANG IN ENGLISH AND
ITS EQUIVALENTS IN VIETNAMESE
By: Nguyễn Thùy Dương
Class: NA 903
Supervisor: MS Nguyễn Thúy
Thu
Haiphong,May,2009
2
CỘNG HOÀ XÃ HỘI CHỦ NGHĨA VIỆT NAM
Độc lập _tự do _hạnh phúc
o O o.
BỘ GIÁO DỤC VÀ ĐÀO TẠO
TRƯỜNG ĐẠI HỌC DÂN LẬP HẢI PHÒNG
NHIỆM VỤ ĐỀ TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
Sinh viên :Nguyễn Thuỳ DươngMã số:
Lớp : NA903 Ngành: Ngoại ngữ
Tên đề tài :A study on rhyming slang in English and its equivalents in
Vietnamese
3
NHẬN XÉT ĐÁNH GIÁ CỦA CÁN BỘ CHẤM PHẢN BIỆN ĐỀ
TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
1Đánh giá chất lượng đề tài tốt nghiệp về các mặt thu nhập ,phân tích số liệu ban
đầu, cơ sở lý luận chọn phương án tối ưu,cách tính toán chất lượng thuyết minh

bản vẽ, giá trị lý luận và thực tiễn của đề tài .
2Cho điểm của cán bộ phản biện (điểm ghi bằng chữ và số)
Hải Phòng ,ngày..tháng..năm 2009
Người chấm phản biện
CÁN BỘ HƯỚNG DẪN ĐỀ TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
Người hướng dẫn chính:
4
Họ và tên: Nguyễn Thuý Thu
Học hàm,học vị :Thạc sĩ
Cơ quan công tác: Trường Đại học dân lập Hải Phòng
Nội dung hướng dẫn: A study on rhyming slang in English
and its equivalents in Vietnamese
Đề tài tốt nghiệp được giao ngày..tháng năm 2009
Yêu cầu hoàn thành trước ngày.tháng.năm 2009
Đã nhận nhiệm vụ Đ.T.T.N Đã giao nhiệm vụ Đ.T.T.N
Sinh viên Cán bộ hướng dẫn
Hải Phòng, ngày .tháng.năm
2009
Hiệu trưởng
PHẦN NHẬN XÉT TÓM TẮT CỦA CÁN BỘ HƯỚNG DẪN
5
1 Tinh thần thái độ của sinh viên trong quá trình làm đề tài tốt nghiệp
2 Đánh giá chất lượng của Đ. T.T.N( So với nội dung yêu cầu đã đề ra trong
nhiệm
vụ Đ.T.T.N trên các mặt lý luận, thực tiễn ,)
3 Cho điềm của cán bộ hướng dẫn(Điểm ghi bằng số và chữ)
Hải Phòng ngày tháng năm 2009
Cán bộ hướng dẫn chính
6
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
PART I: INTRODUCTION ……………………………………………………………………. 1
I. Rationale …………………………………. ….1
II. Aims of the study …………………………. ..1
III. Scope of the study ……………………… 1
IV. Methodology ……………………………………. 2
V. Comments on the survey questionnaire ………………………… .2
VI. Design of the study ……………………………….. …5
PART II: DEVELOPMENT …………………………………………………………………… 6
Chapter I: Theoretical background ……………………………………………………………… 6
I. Definitions ……………………………………………………………………………………………. 6
I.1. Definitions of slang ……………………….. 6
I.2. Definition of jargon ………………………………………………… …7
I.3. Definitions of rhyming slang ……………………. .9
II. The origins ………………………………………………………………………………………… 11
II.1. The origins of slang ……………………. …11
II.2. The origins of rhyming slang …………………… ..12
III. Classifications ………………………………………………………………………………….. 14
III.1. Classifications of slang ………………….. ..14
III.2. Classification of rhyming slang …………………………….. ..18
III.2.1. Cockney Rhyming slang …………………….. …18
III.2.2. Internet rhyming slang …………………………. .20
Chapter II: English and Vietnamese rhyming slang in survey ……………………… 22
I. English rhyming slang ………………………………………………………………………… 22
I.1. Definition ………………………………………………………………………………………… 22
7
I.2. The findings …………………………………………………………………………………….. 22
I.2.1. The use of rhyming slang at school ………………………………………………….. 22
I.2.2. The use of rhyming slang at home ……………………………………………………. 25
I.2.3. The use of rhyming slang at the party ………………………………………………. 25
I.2.4 Summaries ……………………………………………………………………………………… 27
II. Vietnamese rhyming slang …………………………………………………………………. 28
II.1. Definition ……………………………………………………………………………………….. 28
II.2.The findings …………………………………………………………………………………….. 29
II.2.1. The use of rhyming slang at school …………………………………………………. 29
II.2.2. The use of rhyming slang at home ………………………………………………….. 30
II.2.3. The use of rhyming slang at the party …………………………………………….. 31
II.2.4. Summaries …………………………………………………………………………………… 31
Chapter III: English and Vietnamese rhyming slang in comparison ……………… 33
I. Similarities …………………………………………………………………………………………. 33
II. Differences ………………………………………………………………………………………… 35
PART III: CONCLUSION ……………………………………………………………………. 40
REFERENCES
In English
1. Ayto, John. 2002. The Oxford Dictionary of Rhyming Slang. Oxford
University Press.
2. B. Winona (2007) , The history of slang
8
3. B. Antonio. 1998. “Origin of Cockney Slang Dicky Dirt”. In Comments
on Etymology 27 (8): pp. 16-20.
4. B. Antonio. 2001. “The Rhyming Slang of the Junkie”. In English Today
17 (2): pp. 39-45.
5. B.Antonio. 2001. “From Alsatian Dog to Wooden Shoe: Linguistic
Xenophobia in Rhyming Slang”. In English Studies 82 (4): pp. 336-348.
6. C. Roberts, Heavy Words Lightly Thrown: The Reason Behind Rhyme,
Thorndike Press,2006 (ISBN 0-7862-8517-6)
7. G. Jonathon. 2000. Cassell’s Rhyming Slang. Cassell.
8. Franklyn, Julian. 1960. A Dictionary of Rhyming Slang. Routledge.
9. P.Eric (1894-1979, Slang: Today and Yesterday, 1933, Ch. 2
Website
1.
2. .com
3. www.urbandictionary.com
4. www.wikipedia.org
In Vietnamese
1. Báo hoa học trò, tiếng lóng phổ biến trong giới sinh viên , học sinh
2. express.net, tiếng lóng giúp 8x thể hiện cá tính
3. www.tudientienglong.vn
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
During the process of doing this graduation paper, my debts to my
teachers, my friends, and my family are many and various.
First of all, I would like to express my deep gratitude to my supervisor
Mrs. Nguyễn Thuý Thu, M.A who has helped me much in providing materials
and giving suggestions as well as guidance so that I can fulfill this graduation
paper.
My special thanks to go to Mrs. Trần Thị Ngọc Liên, The Dean of
Foreign Language
9
Department of Haiphong Private University.
In addition, I also send my gratefulness to all the teachers in Foreign
Language
Department of Haiphong Private University for their lectures in which the
knowledge has helped me accomplish this graduation paper.
Last but not least, I am really indebted to my family who constantly
support me very much
QUESIONAIRE
Situation 1: At school
1. How often do you use rhyming slang?
2. How often do your old teachers use rhyming slang?
3. How often do your young teachers use rhyming slang?
..
4. Give me some examples that you and your teachers use rhyming slang?
..
Situation 2: At home
1. How often do you use rhyming slang?
10
2. How often do your grand-parents use rhyming slang?
.
3. How often do your parents use rhyming slang?
.
4. Give me some examples that you use rhyming slang?
.
Situation 3: At the party?
1. How often do your acquaintants use rhyming slang?
2. How often do your strangers use rhyming slang?
.
3. Give me some examples?
..
11
PART I
INTRODUCTION
I.Rationale
Nowadays, there are many people all over the world studying English
because English is used as the official language in 44 countries as well as the
language of business, commerce, politics, science,etc.However, like many
other languages, when using English in communication, especially when we
speak to native people, we often heard some strange words that we can never
heard and we can‟t look up their meaning in ordinary dictionaries. They are
slang words that make almost people studying English feel difficult to
understand in conversations. Hence,to help English leaners understand what the
native people say more clearly, I choose the research on slang with the subjiect
about rhyming slang, which is the most widely used in slang system.
II. Aims of the study
Together with the development of the society, English language is also
constantly growing, developing and changing. English rhyming slang isn‟t
outside of this process.From the language of the street, nowadays rhyming slang
has became the second English language breaking out all over the world .It is
used widely in life, communication , film,fiction,etc.Hence, this study aims at:
– Giving the denifition of rhyming slang
– Outlining the different kinds of rhyming slang
– Surveying about the use of rhyming slang in three situations: at home, at
school and at the party.
– Comparing the similarities and differences between English and
Vietnamese rhyming slang.
III. Scope of the study
Due to the limitation of the time, resource and my own knowledge, this
study only focus on: giving the understanding of English rhyming slang , their
constrast in
English and Vietnamese to find out the similarities and the differences in
12
three situations:
-At school
-At home
-At the party.
IV. Method of the study
To distingguish similarities and differences in using rhyming slang
between two languages, comparision is the most effective method. The result of
comparision helps to make the English spoken in communication easier.For that
reason, I choose the contrastive analysis method in my study.
Besides, this study is carried out by gathering, analyzing the reference
materials and investigating some people using rhyming slang at school, at home
and at the party.
V. Comments on the survey questionnaires
V.1. On the informants
The survey is conducted with fifty American and fiftyVietnamese
people.There is two groups of informants. The first group who administered the
questionnaire in Vietnamese consists of the Vietnamese all living in Northern
Vietnam. The second group who administered the questionnaire in English
includes English native speakers. The information about informants is quite
nescessary for data analysis, so the informants were requested to provide the
following parameters:
– Age
– The social relationship
Below is the table which show the number of informants with their status
parameters
Status parameters
Informants
Vietnamese American
Persons
young 35 30
old 15 20
Table 1: Distribution of informants with their status parameters
13
V.2. On the survey questionnaire
The survey questionnaire is designed to investigate the use of rhyming
slang in communication of Vietnamese and American. The concentrates on the
three sistuations and utterances of rhyming slang .The survey quesionnaire has
two parts:
– Part 1 is designed for general information about the informants
– Part 2 is designed for American and Vietnamese people to find out how
they use rhyming slang in the following situations:
+ Situation 1: At school: How often do you use rhyimng slang at school?
+ Situation 2: At home: How often do you use rhyming slang at home?
+ Situation 3: At the party: How often do you use rhyming slang at the
party? One hundred completed questionnaires (50 in Vitenamese and in English)
were selected. As stated above the aims of the study is to investigate three
specific sistuations, at school, at home and at the party, of the using rhyming
slang in daily speech activities.The communicating partners are:
– The informants‟ teacher
– The informants‟ student
– The informants‟ grand-parents
– The informants‟ parents
– The informants‟ children
– The informants‟ acquaintants (older and younger)
– The informants‟ strangers (older and younger)
The two groups of informants were requested to write exactly how often
they use rhyming slang to communicate in each of situations
14
Situations
Communicating
partners
The level of using rhyming slang of
American
often sometimes rarely never
Situation 1
old teacher x
young teacher x
student x
Situation 2
grand-parents x
parents x
children x
Situation 3
Acquaintants(old) x
Strangers(old) x
Acquaintants(young) x
Strangers(young) x
Table 2: The frequency of using rhyming slang of American
Situations
Communicating
partner
The level of using rhyming slang of
Vietnamese
often sometimes rarely never
Situation1 old teacher x
young teacher x
student x
Situation 2 Grand-parents x
parents x
children x
Situation 3 Acquaintants(old) x
Acquaintants(old) x
Strangers(young) x
Strangers(young) x
Table 3: The frequency of rhyming slang of Vietnamese
15
VI. Design of the study
This study consists of three parts:
Part I is the “Introduction” which introduce Rationale, Aim,Scope,
Method and the Design of the study .
Part II is the “Development” which is divided into three main chapters
Chapter I is the “Theoretical background” providing the definitions,
origin, classifications.
Chapter II is the “English and Vietnames rhyming slang” surveying the
use of English and Vietnamese rhyming slang between the older and the
younger persons
Chapter III is the “English rhyming slang in comparision with Vietnamese
rhyming slang” comparing the similarities and differences between English and
Vietnamese rhyming slang.
Part III is the “Conclusion” which summazies the main points of the study.
16
PART II: DEVELOPMENT
CHAPTER I
THEORETICAL BACKGROUND
I. Definition
I.1. Definition of slang
There are many definitions of slang.According to The Oxford English
Dictionary (2000:840) slang is very informal language. Slang is
sometimes describled as “the language of sub-cultures” or „the language of the
street‟‟. It tends to be vivid and colourful and holds a delicate position between
the colloquial and the vulgar.
Examples:
MONEY dough, lolly, spondulicks
FOOD grub, nosh, scoff
DRINK sloshed, smashed, plastered
SEX nookey, the other, crumpet
(
Besides, .com also refers to slang as: the language at
its most informal, using expressions that many would consider to be
grammatically imperfect draw and keep the group together. It changes very
quickly in English. Example: English often says “use your loaf of bread”
meaning: “use your head”
In addtion, Bethany.K.Dumas and Jonathan Lighter (1978:95) define,
“slang is a set of highly informal words and expressions that are not considered
standard in the speaker’s dialect or language. Slang is often highly regional,
specific to a particular territory or subculture. Slang words and expressions can
spread outside their original arena, and some may even lose their slang status
and become accepted as a standard language. Often, the widespread adoption of
a slang term by mainstream culture will cause the subculture it originated in to
17
create a new, less recognized term”.
The origins of slang are usually found in the desire of those members of a
paticular group ,or sub culture, to communicate freely and intelligibly with each
other from their common based of shared experience, interest, attitudes and
identity .This is, however, coupled with the desire to differentiate themselves
either from another group, or from the larger society as a whole.Thus, slang
involves the unconventional, even the taboo, (to differentiate the speaker from
the norms of society) and often hostility and vulgar epithets for authorities or
rivals (to differentiate from the “others” who are not members of the same
group). Slang, therefore, has both positive and negative aspects. When it
facilitates easier and familiar communication among those with a common base
it functions to improve harmonious communication; when it draws distinctions,
particularly hostile ones, building barriers between groups of people, it enhances
the problems in human relationships that have been experienced throughout
history.
Example:
Apples = apples and pears = stairs
Barnet = Barnet Fair = hair
Brass = Brass Flute = Prostitute
Dog = dog and bone = telephone
Jam = Jam jar = Car
China = China plate = mate
Frog = frog and toad = road
Rosie = Rosie Lee = tea
I.2. Definition of jargon
The English Oxford Dictionary (2000:489) defines,” Jargon is specialized
technical language of a particular subject”. For example:
Agenda: The list of items to be discussed during a meeting, negotiation, or
mediation.
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Active
Listening: An elicitive listening process whereby one communicator seeks to
empathetically understand, and confirm understanding, of the
other.
ADR: The term Alternative Dispute Resolution (an alternative to
litigation) or Appropriate Dispute Resolution, ADR refers to an
ever-expanding range of innovative dispute resolution techniques
for better managing and resolving disputes outside the traditional
and adversarial court process. The more common options for
creative collaboration include, dispute prevention, negotiated
rulemaking, negotiation, facilitation, mediation, conciliation,
mediation-arbitration, arbitration, case management, early neutral
evaluation, neutral expert fact-finding, corporate mini-trial. It
must also be noted that new strategies and forms are continually
being developed in a variety of forums and continue to be
implemented in a variety of ways.
Arbitration: A process by which disputing parties refer their dispute to a
mutually acceptable authority to decide what should happen.
Traditionally, the parties are bound by the Arbitrator’s decision.
Under the Commercial Arbitration Act, such decisions can not be
appealed except on an issue of ‘law”.
Analysis: The process by which parties to a negotiation or a third party
intervener critically analyze, evaluate, identify and/or hunch
historical dynamics, environment, paradigms, and underlying
interests and issues which gave rise to the dispute and possible
areas of resolution.
Assertion: assertiveness The process by which one makes direct ‘I’ statements
about one’s own feelings, thoughts and wishes while respecting
the feelings and rights of the other party to the communication.
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BATNA
WATNA: BATNA is often utilized as a tool to enable each party to
determine whether a negotiated agreement is in that party’s best
interest. The BATNA also gives the party negotiating power as it
provides a fallback alternative. In effect, the BATNA is the best
result the party can hope to achieve if a settlement can not be
negotiated. For example, when negotiating a pay raise, having
another job offer with a different employer at a higher rate of pay
may be a powerful BATNA.
It is important to make a distinction between slang and jargon. Jargon is
the technical vocabulary of a partic

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